NEW ENGLAND MOTORSPORTS NORTH
By Lou Modestino (for 3/30-4/1/12)
Devil’s Bowl Speedway got a charge this week when Interstate All Battery Center of Rutland, VT pledged its support of stock car racing in the Champlain Valley in 2012. Interstate All Battery Center will host a full card of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing on Friday, June 29.
Interstate All Battery Center becomes the latest in a line of locally-owned businesses to back the new ownership and management team at the asphalt half-mile Devil’s Bowl track in West Haven, VT. Interstate All Battery Center and store owner Babe Keith have sponsored cars and events at Devil’s Bowl Speedway for over 25 years, beginning with popular Modified racer Gibby Fountain in the 1980s.
In addition to presenting the June 29 event, Interstate All Battery Center has provided power for a new “Fun Bus” tour at Devil’s Bowl Speedway, offering fans of all ages an up-close view of the action in the pits and on the race track. A pair of race cars will fly Interstate Batteries colors, too, as Don Scarborough campaigns his Interstate-sponsored No. 11 car in the Bond Auto Parts Modified division and Ryan Keith returns to competition in the Renegade class, driving car No. 31 — the same number on Fountain’s Interstate Batteries-sponsored car years ago.
“We are thrilled to back involved in racing at Devil’s Bowl Speedway. Our business has a great tie into racing,” said Interstate All Battery Center owner Babe Keith. “We are also happy to be sponsoring two race cars including the No. 31 Interstate Batteries car driven by my brother, Ryan Keith.”
Conveniently located on River Street in Rutland, VT, Interstate All Battery Center has a full line of batteries for every application, from cars and trucks to toys, from power tools to remote controls. For more information, call (802) 786-9075 or visit www.interstatebatteries.com
Devil’s Bowl Speedway opens its 46th season of stock car racing on Sunday, May 6, with the Bond Auto Parts Modifieds, Renegades, Bombers, and the prestigious Spring Green 112 for the American-Canadian Tour Late Models
Thunder Road has announced that all its 2012 season pass holders will receive half price off the $18 general admission ticket to the American Canadian Tour Fall Foliage at Airborne Speedway in Plattsburgh, NY on Saturday, October 6. The event will feature the 200-lap final point-counting ACT event of the season.
2012 season passes, either reserved seat gold passes or general admission passes, are good for admission to all 18 events at the “Nation’s Site of Excitement.” The 18 events of 2012 include special events such as the 50th People’s United Bank Milk Bowl, the ACT Merchants Bank season opener, the ACT Bond Auto Labor Day Classic, the Mekkelsen RV Memorial Day Classic and the Vermont Governor’s Cup. Season pass holders also get to enter the grandstand area 15 minutes before regular general admission tickets.
Season passes are still available. They are just $199 for general admission passes or $259 for gold season passes, which allow fans to reserve their seat in the grandstands for the entire season (first come first serve basis). Passes can be bought by contacting the ACT office at 802.244.6963 or [email protected]
The American Canadian Tour (ACT) announced today that Eddie MacDonald from Rowley, MA and Donald Theetge, of Boischatel, Quebec have filed entries for the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 150 championship stock car season opener at the Lee USA Speedway on Sunday, April 15, 2012.
MacDonald has compiled an impressive regional and national record during his racing career. The ‘outlaw’, as he is often known throughout New England, is one of the last of the Northeast independent teams to race on the national stage in the NASCAR K&N Series. He also has recorded an impressive win record in his appearances with his ACT Late Model over the past several years, including two New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS) ACT Invitational wins and two TD Bank Oxford 250 wins. His family owns the Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH which is where he first began his racing career.
“We have really enjoyed racing with the ACT guys over the past four or five seasons. There is a great mix of veteran and young talent in ACT racing, and we feel lucky to have won a few of the big shows,” said MacDonald.
“Everyone might think we have an advantage at Lee because I started there, but really we are still on a learning curve with the ACT cars, especially on the short tracks. Guys like Wayne Helliwell Jr. (multi-time Lee track Champion), Brian Hoar (eight-time ACT Champion and defending NH Governor’s Cup winner), and Joey Polewarczyk, Jr. from nearby Hudson, NH (former winner of the NH Governor’s Cup) are going to be tough to beat. We have a lot of fun racing with the ACT Late Model and always look forward to the races we can fit into our schedule,” concluded MacDonald.
The ACT Lee USA relationship goes back to 1987 with a lot of history, and has been the traditional opening event of the season for northern Late Model racing and the ACT US. The sister series for the ACT is the Castrol Series which races a full touring schedule throughout the province of Quebec. Donald Theetge is a two-time Champion of that series and has filed an entry for the ACT US Lee opening event.
“We don’t open our season in Quebec until May 26th and I have a brand new car for this season, so I want to try it out. I have raced at Lee in both the old ACT Pro Stock division and with the Late Model. It is fast and the only problem is the walls! I really just want to get some time on my new car because I wish to run for the ACT Castrol Series Championship this season. Patrick (Laperle) and I have each won the Castrol title two times and I would like to be the first with three championships. If we have some luck we hope we can qualify and have a good race at Lee”, said Theetge.
MacDonald and Theetge will have plenty of competition as some of the best Late Model racers in the region will begin their seasons at the New Hampshire 1/3 mile oval.
Other early entrants looking to get their 2012 seasons off to a good start include several Pine Tree state drivers. Veterans Glen Luce, Turner, ME; Ricky Rolfe, Albany Township, ME; and 2011 ACT Rookie-of-the-Year Ben Ashline from Pittston, ME have entered. Young sensation Austin Theriault from Fort Kent, ME, in the Mickey Green-prepared TNT entry, will look for his first ACT win at the Lee opener.
Milton, Vermont will be well represented with seven-time ACT Champion Jean-Paul Cyr, and veteran Brent Dragon who has never missed a Late Model opener at Lee, leading the charge.
Trying to keep the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup in their home state, besides Granite State natives Helliwell and Pole, will be Randy Potter, Groveton, NH and the ‘Irish Hit Man’ Quinny Welch from Lancaster, NH, along with former Lee Late Model veteran, Jeffrey Labrecque, Jr., Rochester, NH.
Over 40 teams are expected to open their race seasons at Lee on Sunday, May 15, 2012. Post time is 1:15pm. Gates open at 10:00am. General Admission: Adults $25; Juniors (13-16 years old) $15; Kids (12 and under) Free.
The Ford Blue Oval Cup expects continued growth entering its third season in 2012. The program has awarded over $30,000 to American Canadian Tour Late Model teams around the Northeast U.S. and Eastern Canada since its inaugural 2010 season.
The Blue Oval Cup program was developed for Ford competitors in ACT Late Model events and ACT affiliated tracks in 2010, the first full-season of the Ford engine’s inclusion in the ACT rulebook. The program saw a near 100% increase in participating competitors during the 2011 season.
“Ford Racing is once again proud to renew the Blue Oval Challenge Cup with the American Canadian Tour. This is the third year for one of the richest programs that Ford Racing offers for the short track racer. Not only do the top 10 ACT Racers using the S347JR have the opportunity for the season end-cash rewards, but all Ford-Powered ACT Racers have access to technical support directly from Ford Racing,” said Mike Delahanty of Ford Racing. “In the three years since introducing the Blue Oval Challenge Cup, a number of the top ACT Teams have made the switch to the S347JR engine, not just for the benefits of the program, but for the race-winning performance that the engine delivers.”
The program is expected to continue to grow during the 2012 season as Ford has posted $27,000 in awards for Ford Late Model teams. The Ford awards contingencies to podium finishing Ford competitors in all ACT events throughout the season. Registered Ford teams also receive points all season long for competition in ACT events and ACT affiliated tracks for the Ford Blue Oval Cup.
Wayne Helliwell, Jr. earned his second straight Ford Blue Oval Cup Championship in 2011, while also claiming second in the ACT standings. Ford has also scored several big wins, including Joey Polewarczyk, Jr.’s 2010 ACT Invitational at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, 2010 People’s United Bank Milk Bowl at Thunder Road and 2011 Goodyear Speedweeks Cup at New Smyrna (FL) Speedway.
The 2012 ACT season will kick off on Sunday, April 15th with the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 150 at Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH.
Thunder Road officials have announced the return of the annual car show to the “Nation’s Site of Excitement” on Saturday, April 28. The event is scheduled for one day prior to the opening event of the 53rd Thunder Road season, the 14th Annual Merchants Bank 150, on Sunday, April 29.
All the stars of the American Canadian Tour and Thunder Road will be on hand for the car show. The event, which most recently was held in downtown Barre, will be located in the Thunder Road pit area from 10am to 12noon. Fans of all ages can check out the cars and meet their favorite drivers free of charge. The annual Pit Stop Contest will also be held in the pit area at 11am.
The 53rd season atop Quarry Hill will kick off with the second event on the American Canadian Tour, the Merchants Bank 150, on Sunday, April 29. 2010 Thunder Road Champion and hometown favorite Nick Sweet will attempt to claim his third straight season opener.
Here’s what’s happening in northern New England this weekend. On Saturday the Maine Motorsports HOF will have its annual dinner and induction at the Civic Center in Augusta, ME. It’s test and tune on Sunday at 8 a.m. at the New England Dragway in Epping, NH.
Visit NERacingForum.Com for latest New England Racing community News.